Letter to Wall Street Journal

In a Letter to the Editor of the Wall Street Journal published last week, IBAT President and CEO Chris Williston praised recent legislative efforts to rein in the risky activities of the largest banks.  

"The nearly 7,000 community banks across the country spend an inordinate amount of time and money, not to mention frustration, attempting to comply with an avalanche of new regulations aimed at solving problems they neither participated in nor profited from," Williston said. "We are hopeful that bipartisan efforts in Congress will provide much-needed regulatory relief for small banks, while ensuring new rules are directed at those responsible for the problems the regulations are intended to curtail."

In particular, Williston acknowledged progress that has been made between Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R., Texas), House Financial Services Committee chairman, and ranking member Maxine Waters (D., Calif.), in "their acknowledgement that a one-size-fits-all regulatory system has caused irreparable harm to independent banks."

IBAT continues to work with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to draw attention to the stark differences in the business models of community banks and the biggest financial institutions. 

Week in Review: July 26, 2013

With [Friday] morning's release of the University of Michigan's Index of Consumer Sentiment showing a rise to 85.1 from 83.9, one wonders if survey takers might have taken a detour around Detroit. Apart from the financial maladies that plague that beleaguered municipality, a rosier outlook was also manifested by the 8.3% rise in New Home Sales, which more than made up for the 1.2% decline in Existing Home Sales. As far as prices are concerned, the FHFA House Price Index rose by .7% in May. As uplifting as the housing sector's resurgence has been, concerns continue to swirl around the possible dampening effect of higher mortgage rates... Read more in the Baker Market Update.

IBAT Members Celebrate Milestones

July 19th marked a special day for the IBAT family, with two IBAT-member bank celebrations in La Grange and Schwertner.

National Bank & Trust, La Grange celebrated their 125th anniversary with prizes and refreshments in an outdoor event. IBAT’s Shannon Phillips was on-hand to help the bank celebrate this important milestone.

Schwertner State Bank held their 100-year anniversary celebration on the same day. Among the guests were Governor Rick Perry, former FDIC Chair Don Powell, Senator Charles Schwertner, Commissioner Cooper and IBAT’s very own Steve Scurlock. Everyone enjoyed the festivities and BBQ.

Both banks were presented with resolutions on behalf of the IBAT Board of Directors. IBAT congratulates both banks for their century-long service in Texas.

National Bank & Trust, La Grange celebrates 125 years

What is BOI?

Participants in the Bank Operations Institute (BOI) achieve a comprehensive understanding of community bank operations and how it contributes to the overall success and profitability of the bank.  The program is designed by our advisory board, made up of regulators and bankers, and is based on the most current regulations and exam practices. Because the advisory board provides relevant issues, the curriculum is dynamic. Presentation styles include lecture, case studies, simulations and interactive class exercises.

Registration for the 33rd year of the IBAT Bank Operations Institute, Sunday, October 13th - Friday, October 18th on the campus of SMU in Dallas, is now open.  Click here to view the full brochure.

Staff contact: Julie Courtney, jcourtney@ibat.org, 512-275-2219

CFPB's New Director

Last week, the United States Senate confirmed the nomination of CFPB Director Richard Cordray as part of a larger compromise to maintain Senate filibuster rules in exchange for the approval of a number of administration nominees.  

Senate Republicans had long delayed the nomination of Cordray, who was first nominated in 2011, in an effort to work towards changing the bureau’s governance structure to provide more Congressional oversight.  With the smoke now cleared around the confirmation of Director Cordray, the bureau can promulgate rules for non-bank portions of the financial services industry without fear of nullification by future legal action surrounding the circumstances of his initial appointment. 

IT Security Summit

It's not a surprise to anyone anymore that cyber-threats are part of our daily lives. Being aware of it is not enough, having a firewall is not enough and what we did 10 years ago is not enough - as the threat landscape is ever-evolving.  IBAT's  IT Security Summit, taking place in San Antonio on August 8,  will teach your security staff the newest and best practices in securing your bank including:

  • Ever Evolving Threat Landscape;
  • APTs: Fighting Targeted Threats;
  • Presenting to the Board and Executives;
  • Incident Response; and
  • Banking Compliance.

For detailed information about the summit, and a full agenda, click here.

Salary Survey

For the past 22 years, the IBAT Community Bank Compensation Survey has been the "gold standard" for salary and benefit data.  It is the exclusive go-to resource for community bank CEOs grappling with compensation issues for all bank personnel. We always look for ways to deliver additional value to IBAT Member Banks and after hearing feedback from you, we've made some significant improvements to the survey for your benefit. Here's what has changed:

  • Engaged Industry Insights to conduct annual survey;
  • One data collection effort per year beginning August 1, 2013;
  • Condensed the survey to the top 25 most essential job positions to reduce your time commitment; and
  • Consolidated data filtration parameters to yield larger data pools for more valuable customized comparison reporting.

To learn more about participating in IBAT's improved survey and to see a live demo, IBAT and Industry Insights will host a complimentary 30-minute webinar next week exclusively for IBAT Members. Stay tuned for forthcoming webinar registration information and don't forget to submit data beginning August 1st!

Week in Review: July 23, 2013

In his two days of Congressional testimony this week, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, excluded from Fifth Amendment protection, used the legislative forum to continue to downplay the perception that it is the FOMC's intention to begin a "tapering off" of their $85B monthly bond purchases. Mr. Bernanke took the opportunity to assure market participants that monetary policy will be "highly accommodative for the foreseeable future." The question then becomes, just how far can Ben foresee? He also reiterated that the future direction of monetary policy is not... Read more in the Baker Market Update.

Silver Alert


REGIONS 3, NWS Brownsville        


The Edinburg Police Department is searching for Ernesto Mendiola Salinas, diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, Hispanic, male, 90 years old, DOB 04/23/1923, HEIGHT 5’ 6”, WEIGHT 220 lbs, White Hair, Brown Eyes, last seen wearing a white and black shirt, black pants with no shoes.

The senior citizen was last seen at 2330 CDT, 07/21/2013 on foot in the City of Edinburg.

Law enforcement officials believe this senior citizen’s disappearance poses a credible threat to HIS/HER own health and safety.

If you have any information regarding this missing senior citizen, contact the Edinburg Police Department at 956-289-7700.

News Media Point of Contact is Edinburg Police Department at 956-802-2417.

Legislative White Paper

IBAT’s post-legislative session white paper, The 2013 Legislative Session: Action and Inaction is now available for download.  The white paper serves to compliment the already-made-available 2013 Legislative Update Webinar

The 83rd Texas Legislature passed a number of bills impacting  community banks, including:

  • Property Tax Lender Reforms
  • Prohibition on Debit Card Surcharges
  • Interest and Fees on Loans
  • Regulatory Oversight
  • Foreclosure
  • Trusts
  • Taxes

IBAT General Counsel Karen Neeley addresses these topics, as well as others which will undoubtedly arise in future sessions.

Bank Director Assembly

Join your peers for SWGSB's 137th Assembly for Bank Directors, an important conference on board duties and responsibilities. With the community banking industry facing unprecedented changes and challenges, top banking insiders are invited to discuss in depth Superior Community Banking: Reaching for Success. On the agenda are critical issues bank boards nationwide are addressing, such as:

  • economic outlook;
  • compliance risks;
  • regulatory issues;
  • strategic issues;
  • brand communication; and
  • key survival strategies.

Workshops will give you the opportunity to "drill down" further to gain a complete understanding of regulator expectations and stress testing. For more details about the program, and to register, please click here.

Urgent Edition Webinar

Basel III Final Rule: 
Impact on Community Banks: Effective January 1, 2014

Available ONLY via Archived Webinar (Includes FREE CD ROM)

Archived webinar available Friday, July 26, 2013

(See July 26, 2013, on order form.)

The final rules for the implementation of Basel III capital calculations will have a significant impact on community banks.  While lobbying efforts were successful in eliminating many of the most egregious components of the proposed rule, the final rule maintains some negative aspects.  This webinar will cover the final rule and its implication for community banks, and provide a proven methodology for implementing Basel III into your bank’s capital planning and contingency. 


  • Final Basel III risk-based capital requirements for community banks

  • Impact of 1-4 family real estate changes

  • Effect of unrealized gains and losses within the investment portfolio

  • Understand and calculate the impact of highly-volatile commercial real estate

  • Additional capital needed to support non-performing loans

  • Impact of trust-preferred securities

  • How to use the final Basel III rules in determining capital adequacy

  • Perils to avoid in determining capital adequacy

  • How capital changes impact strategic planning

  • Practical approach for developing a capital-contingency plan


    • Example of methodologies to:

      • Assess the impact of Basel III on your bank

      • Determine capital adequacy

      • Stress test capital

    • Employee training log

    • Quiz you can administer to measure staff learning and a separate answer key

Attendance verification for CE credits provided upon request.


This informative session is designed for community bank presidents, chief financial officers, and board members who want to remain proactive in dealing with bank capital.

ABOUT THE PRESENTER – Gary J. Young, CEO, Young & Associates, Inc.

Gary J. Young is Chief Executive Officer of Young & Associates, Inc.  During 34 years in consulting and 45 years in the industry, he has assisted hundreds of financial institutions from coast-to-coast with improving shareholder value and profit, establishing effective strategic plans, management assessments, regulatory concerns, budgeting, asset/liability management, expansion planning, and mergers and acquisitions. 

Gary is a popular speaker due to his practical and valuable insight and has conducted seminars throughout the United States and in Europe.  Gary is on the board of a community bank, manages a bank investment fund, and is a co-founder of Capital Market Securities, Inc., which assists with mergers and acquisitions.



The archived webinar is a recording that includes the audio, visuals, and handouts. We even provide the presenter’s email address so you may ask follow-up questions. You will receive an email with the archived webinar link.  This webinar link can be viewed anytime 24/7, and will expire 6 months after the original availability date.

As an added bonus, you will also receive a FREE audio/visual CD ROM.* The CD ROM includes the original audio/visual presentation, the question and answer sessions, and the handouts.  Use the archived webinar or this “off-the-shelf” program for future training.

The archived webinar (including the free CD ROM) may ONLY be ordered for 6 months following the original availability date.  Neither the link nor CD will be available after this time.

Note:  All materials are subject to copyright.  Transmission, retransmission, or republishing this webinar to other institutions or those not employed by your financial institution is prohibited.  Print materials may be copied for eligible participants only.


*CD ROM is for Mac and PC use only

Financial Literacy Summit

Have you been considering charting or increasing your outreach in financial education? If so, you won't want to miss next week's Financial Literacy Summit. See the amazing line-up of speakers.

ACTION: Send a representative from your bank. Don't be left scrambling as this conversation develops at the national, state and local levels.

Here's a snapshot of what this annual summit provides:

  • Community banking CEOs talking strategy - the WHY;
  • Winners of the IBAT Best of Community Banking Awards showing proven methods - the HOW;
  • Current research on high school students and personal finance management;
  • Best practices from bankers who are using Money Smart, Building Wealth, Junior Achievement and will share what has worked, not worked in their markets; and
  • A sneak peek at the CFPB plans for financial education. You may have seen that last night, Richard Cordray received confirmation as the Director of the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau.

By choosing to be part of the conversation, your bank will be leaps ahead of those who do not attend. We offer this comprehensive program only once a year. Can you afford to put your financial education strategy into hibernation for a full year?

Register today - only a few rooms remain in our block at Hotel ZaZa.

The 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act

Senator Elizabeth Warren along with John McCain, Maria Cantwell and Angus King, have introduced "The 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act," a bill aimed at separating core banking activities from insurance, securities and other non-bank financial services endeavors.  

The bill, S. 1282, is clearly another indication that the risks and inequities associated with too-big-to-fail are continuing to garner attention in Washington.  

The IBAT Board of Directors in late June reaffirmed their support of the Brown-Vitter bill, requiring higher capital levels for banks over $500 Billion in assets, and taking direct aim at the myriad problems of too-big-to-fail. "We are pleased that the debate on too-big-to-fail is moving forward and the visibility of this issue continues to increase," said Christopher Williston, IBAT President and CEO.  "It is something that needs to be addressed, and soon.  Obviously there are significant headwinds, and the largest of the financial conglomerates want no part of these proposals.  We will continue to push for more parity, and our ultimate hope is for a real two-tiered regulatory system – something that Elizabeth Warren and others have embraced."

Further information is available on Senator Warren's website, and we will be closely monitoring the progress of this initiative. 

Special Statement

Independent Bankers Association of Texas (IBAT) President and Chief Executive Officer Christopher L. Williston made the following statement upon the release of “The Protecting American Taxpayers and Homeowners (PATH) Act,” proposed housing finance reform legislation.

“The comprehensive draft legislation released by Chairman Jeb Hensarling boldly addresses a number of critical issues in a broken and unsustainable housing finance environment.

“Housing finance in various forms is a significant line of business for a large percentage of community banks across Texas and the nation, and this sector clearly contributes greatly to the overall economy. Legislative and regulatory remedies addressing the well-documented problems and abuses contributing to the ‘meltdown’ have, as is typical, gone too far and are creating issues with availability and affordability of mortgage and housing credit. 

“Of particular concern to community banks are limitations and new requirements on mortgage lending that impact ‘in portfolio’ loans, i.e., loans kept as assets on a bank’s balance sheet for which the lender takes on the entirety of the risk. The exemption of these loans from a number of cumbersome, expensive and questionable regulatory requirements will allow housing credit to continue to be available to a number of consumers who otherwise may go unserved.

“Further, elimination and/or delay of implementation of a number of mortgage rules impacting all mortgage loans will provide the industry an opportunity to appropriately comply and develop acceptable business models to meet the borrowing needs of their customers.

“We are strongly supportive of these provisions and appreciate the efforts and commitment of the Chairman and Committee leadership and staff. We look forward to working with various stakeholders as this important process moves forward.”

For more information, please contact Steve Scurlock, IBAT Executive Vice President, at 512-275-2226 or sscurlock@ibat.org.